January 17 Philadelphia Inquirer:
“Jim Mora has emerged as one of three candidates for the Eagles‘ defensive coordinator vacancy, according to team sources.
The former Falcons and Seahawks head coach is a “serious” contender, one source said, although the Eagles are expected to take their time interviewing possible replacements for the fired Sean McDermott.
Eagles defensive backs coach Dick Jauron is another candidate, as is former Cardinals defensive coordinator Billy Davis, sources said. Formal interviews have yet to be scheduled. Coach Andy Reid is vacationing, although the Eagles would likely have a coordinator in place by the start of Senior Bowl practices next Monday.
The Eagles have more than just a coordinator’s position to fill. They fired defensive line coach Rory Segrest on Sunday. Further changes to Reid’s defensive staff could come, of course, if Jauron gets promoted or takes the job as Browns defensive coordinator. He will interview in Cleveland later this week.
McDermott, meanwhile, has spoken to Carolina and Denver regarding their defensive coordinator openings, a league source said. The 36-year-old, however, could take a lesser role as a position coach. He worked alongside new Panthers head coach Ron Rivera when both were assistants with the Eagles.
McDermott was fired in midweek, the Eagles confirmed Saturday. Even though his defense finished 12th overall in the league and forced 34 turnovers (ranked fifth), it was also tied for third worst in the league after allowing 31 passing touchdowns. Its red-zone efficiency ranked last, allowing scores 76.7 percent of the time.
If Mora is indeed the front-runner, he, too, must convince the Eagles that he has learned from his mistakes. The 49-year-old has not coached since he was fired by Seattle last January after one season and a 5-11 record. He worked as an analyst for the NFL Network for the last year.
Before his stint with the Seahawks – he also served two seasons as a defensive assistant – he was the head coach of the Falcons. From 2004 to ’06, with current Eagle Michael Vick as his starting quarterback, Atlanta went 26-22 with one playoff appearance. Mora’s defenses as both a head coach and coordinator, however, were never statistically among the league’s top-rated.
Mora has a number of ties to Philadelphia, the Eagles, and some of their coaches. He worked with current Browns president – and Reid mentor – Mike Holmgren in Seattle. He was on the 49ers’ coaching staff along with Eagles offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg in the late 1990s and early 2000s.”
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